UK Sport has today published its new Equality, Diversity and inclusion Strategy to ensure the Olympic and Paralympic high-performance community is where the nation’s diverse and exceptional talent belongs and has the opportunity to be the best they can be.
The strategy is drawn from UK Sport’s new ten-year strategic plan, unveiled last month, to create the greatest decade of extraordinary sporting moments; reaching, inspiring and uniting the nation.
At the heart of this are UK Sport’s three ambitions; to keep winning and win well, to grow a thriving sporting system and to inspire positive change, with equality, diversity and inclusion embedded into how each of these ambitions are achieved.
UK Sport wants to drive ever-more collaboration across the sporting community, harnessing the power and platform of sporting success to increase diversity and inclusion across sports, leaders, workforce, athletes and fans. The Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy will focus on four priority areas:
- To power a more diverse and inclusive team that delivers a broader range of champions and medallists than ever before
- To increase the diversity of leadership on national and international sports bodies
- To promote and embed inclusion across UK Sport’s programmes
- To drive with pace, ambition and accountability the equality, diversity and inclusion agenda within UK Sport
Create more diverse athlete & workforce talent pathways
Working closely with partners, UK Sport is committed to discovering the nation’s exceptional sporting talent of tomorrow. Together, by building a more inclusive and diverse community of workforce and athletes, we will ensure the only barrier to sporting success is potential.
Earlier this month, UK Sport’s first dedicated female coaches leadership programme concluded. It brought together 28 coaches from 16 sports as part of a plan to double the representation of female coaches in the Olympic and Paralympic high-performance community by Paris 2024.
UK Sport and the English Institute of Sport (EIS) have also formed a unique collaboration with Team GB, ParalympicsGB and 19 Olympic and Paralympic sports to search for the athletes of the future.
From Home 2 The Games is an athlete recruitment campaign specifically designed to engage and encourage young people from all communities in the UK to explore their potential in Olympic and Paralympic sports that they may never have thought about getting involved with before.
In parallel, UK Sport is working with Sport England, sportscotland, Sport Wales and Sport Northern Ireland to conduct the first ever cross-system survey of diversity within all five agencies’ funded talent and high-performance programmes. This research will provide a valuable foundation for the development and delivery of plans to increase athlete diversity and improve inclusion and equality across the UK high-performance system.
Increase diversity of representations on NGBs & boards
UK Sport is supporting National Governing Bodies (NGBs) to bring about transformational change in the leadership of sport. In collaboration with Sport England, UK Sport is leading a review into the Code for Sports Governance, which has a major focus on strengthening diversity and inclusion in sport leadership. The outcomes of this review are set to be published next month.
Internationally, we are determined to work with our domestic and international partners to drive diversity and gender equality in international sport through our targeted programmes, partnerships and voice. We will aim for an increasingly diverse, gender-equal network of high-calibre UK individuals in international sport leadership positions.
Promote & embed inclusion
UK Sport wants to reach new audiences, building a broader, more diverse and sustained Olympic and Paralympic sport fanbase for the future.
UK Sport, alongside Sport England, sportscotland, Sport Wales, and Sport Northern Ireland, has just published the outcomes of its joint review Tackling Racism and Racial Inequalities in Sport.
The review was undertaken to help better understand if the five Sports Councils were doing enough to tackle racism as well as to understand the issues and the context involved. The outcomes and the actions to be taken as a result are available to view here.
In the unveiling of the new ten-year strategic plan, UK Sport published its most comprehensive list of international event hosting aspirations for the next decade. We will host a programme of inspirational, major global sporting events, reaching and exciting new audiences, in towns and cities across the UK to grow a more diverse and sustainable fanbase for the future of sport.
Supported by Government and the National Lottery, these events will consider and promote equality, diversity and inclusion with 71 of the 97 events on the target list dual gender and include the rugby and cricket World Cups for women and the Billie Jean King Cup Finals.
In addition, there are also some of the biggest competitions for para sport outside the Paralympic Games being targeted including the World Para Athletics Championships, IBSA World Games, World Para Swimming Championships and Wheelchair Rugby World Championships.
Drive equality, diversity & inclusion agenda
UK Sport wants to ensure its people are reflective of society in the UK and that it can talk and act confidently about inclusion. We also want our leaders to be visible and passionate in this area and overall foster an inclusive culture across the organisation.
In order to achieve this UK Sport will ensure equal opportunity during recruitment and create a process where all talent feels valued and supported throughout. We will embed equality, diversity and inclusion values and principles in all ways of working and in the planning and delivery of all UK Sport activity.
UK Sport will also ensure its board and senior leadership better represent and reflect society in the UK. The steps to achieving this will form part of UK Sport’s new Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan (DIAP), which will be published in the coming months and will be regularly assessed to track its progress.
Sally Munday, CEO at UK Sport, said: “UK Sport is committed to our high-performance community being truly reflective of the society in the UK. Focusing on equality, diversity and inclusion is an integral part of our evolution as an Olympic and Paralympic high-performance community. We will support our community to be ever more collaborative; setting a diverse, ethical and sustainable agenda for tomorrow.
“We want a community that is healthy and thriving for athletes, coaches and support staff, and in which the nation’s exceptional talent has no barriers towards achieving its potential. A thriving high-performance community will not only keep us among the world’s leaders but will also enable us to continue to use our strong voice and ethical approach to shape the direction and development of the international sporting world.
“Through the power of our differences – and sport’s ability to include and inspire – we will enable the extraordinary.”
Click here to read the full Equality, Diversity and Inclusion strategy.